Scatter Brain

Dear J-

There are couple of lists scattered around the house — one a shopping list, the other showing the free parking lots for the San Diego County Fair we attended last weekend — both carefully prepared, written, ready to go, and yet they’ve both gone unused, victim to my increasingly faulty short-term memory. Distractions abound as we get ready to head out of the house; between putting together a bag of milk and snacks, getting the dogs ready, and gearing up (I could use a purse, I suppose), I’m surprised we don’t leave more things at home in the rush out the door.

On more than one occasion, theVet has jokingly accused me of being dead inside; we were discussing what happens after death — as I’ve never given it much thought (or worry, for that matter) I couldn’t say that it’s caused me many sleepless nights. Part of it is that it’s not something you can get a whole lot of precise eyewitness reports back from; the other part is that I’ve got a bit of fatalism in me — I can’t control everything, and I suspect that it’s going to happen from something I’ve forgotten, at any rate. It’s not carte blanche to do whatever I want, mind you — the cosmic slate is not wiped clean by death, let alone having to live in the present.

My brother, having found a new job, is moving to Taiwan in a week. The economy keeps moving in mysterious ways; I, faced with the prospect of possibly not seeing him and his family (it feels remote — we just saw them two weeks ago, and therefore the recent past trumps the unreasonable future, right?) for longer than I can imagine, am now wondering how long a flight figgy can take, how light we can travel. The truth is that with an entire ocean between us, chances are that until we’re all able to live out of a suitcase or two, heading overseas is going to stay difficult — but I’ll find a way to make it work.

It’s not dead inside; inside is a roiling tumult of thought, after all. I may leave the mental lists — those external devices — without batting an eye on the outside, but these things sink down deep where it’s hard to ignore despite what my face says.

Mike

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2 Responses to “Scatter Brain”

  1. Junior Says:

    I went through the “brother moving” thing this past year too – not quite so far away as Taiwan, only Chicago – but still far enough away to mean our visits will be advance planned, require travel and be limited in number because of work schedules, etc. It was a weird head space to be in, I found.

    Taiwan is supposed to be beautiful. I have a very good friend who was born and raised there, and her family lives not far from Kaohsiung. There was a time (long ago) when the band was considering a plan to move there because (at least at the time) Taiwanese audiences were starved for western music and we’d get experience playing in front of huge crowds, etc. It never happened, but there’s a part of me that still wants to visit the country someday.

  2. dearJ Says:

    It feels sudden, which is the main oddness in my head — we just visited him up in San Jose a couple of weeks ago — the South Bay, where he’s been living the past twenty years — and the discussion of an interview in Taiwan seemed as remote as that island; he’ll be moving to Hsinchiu.

    I’m still rattlling things around in my head. Years roll past; we’ve now lived apart longer than we have together and I keep trying to reconcile the images from home with the lives we’ve led, thus far.

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